(kind of) My friend and I went to the local university where the Hotel and Restaurant Management students cooked a meal and people could come in and grade their presentations, service, and of course, the meal itself. The theme of the day was Pasta Palooza, meaning that approximately for an hour we traveled to gorgeous Italy to get lost in some delicious pasta meal, occasionally some desserts and drinks…

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I have been watching some cooking shows lately, for example the Great British Baking Show and the Worst Cooks of America. They are equally great for learning because you learn with the contestants along the way and one rather than the other is great for confidence boosting as well 😀 Another skill you can adopt from watching these shows is how to judge food, what to look for and how to be extremely picky about every little detail that you never even realized mattered before.

I went to the tasting today with such high hopes for my newly acquired talent of judging food to the fullest and I am not gonna lie, when I left I was pretty disappointed in myself. My unconditional love for food over powered the newly graduated food-judge inside of me and no matter what I tasted, I was just happy. I didn’t need much. I just needed food…which kind of sums up my entire life.

My friend said it right: You have to judge them a little bit, so they can get better and improve, but to me everything was delicious and to be fair those students did really well with everything. I loved it all and in that state of mind it is kind of hard to be picky about the unpreferable amount of the Parmesan cheese. (just kidding, there is no such a thing)

When we arrived we signed in and received 8 separate grading cards (one for all 8 student tables) and an Italian “passport”. Each table represented a different city and when we tried their food, we got a food stamp in our passport, representing our little travels through the “country’…and maybe the fact that they were scared of us getting seconds 😀 😀 Well whatever it was, focusing on the big picture, I think the idea is so darn cute that it makes me wanna squeeze the person who came up with it.

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First Stop: ROME

Rome was waiting for us with a wonderfully decorated table, big smiles and some delicious arrabiatta reginette with burrata and basil. Don’t worry, I have no idea what those words are either. I know “basil” and the word “with” and that is all, but it was delicious and it had some cream cheese topping on it that was also very yummy and creamy (wow, I am such a great food critique. Not.) We got cream soda with the meal, it was pink, very creamy and super sweet. That was not my favorite, it is not their fault, I just don’t get along with cream soda…

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Oh, so pretty

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After Rome we went to SOUTH TIROL

Soccer themed table was pretty busy when we got there, and since they made all the food right in front of us, nice and fresh, we had to wait a little bit.

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The place was bumping, I guess everybody wanted free food and felt like judging students. Dangerous combination 😀

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The only thing I kind of found weird here was the bowl they gave us, since the amounts were tiny, it kind of looked weird to hold on to a giant bowl…but honestly… who cares? Bacon!!!!

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Leaving South Tirol we ended up in CAPRI

The beach themed table hit close to my heart. I love to be on the beach in the morning and watch the sun rise while sitting in quiet, looking at the water and thinking without any distractions. It is the BEST. Even though, I talked to a friend about this before, but the ocean and that huge amount of water, kind of scare the heck out of me, I am still glued to the view and the sound of the waves.
Please notice all those beautifully presented blue cream sodas on the table with whipped cream. It looks great as a decoration.

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In Capri we got some pesto gnocchi caprese salad. My only problem with this one was, that I inhaled it in 2 seconds…wish I could have grabbed seconds…so good! I just love gnocchi so so much! ♥

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After Capri we visited the famous vineyards of TUSCANY

We were hoping to get some wine out of the deal, but then realized that it is 1 pm and we are on a university campus and this is a class… 😐

Here the students prepared some bite sized garlic bread and parmesan pesto tortellini that were actually pretty refreshing to eat. It was a nice little change.

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The cold apple cider drink felt great!

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Next stop: LAZIO

Lazio was mine themed in respect of all the men who have been grinding their butt off in the mines. (Respect!) Their ladies used to wait for them with a delicious bowl of pasta carbonara with pancetta for dinner. The table decoration itself deserves an A.

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What a pretty presentation…

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From the mines to MOLISE

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Chitarra lamb and sweet pepper ragu from the southern Italian region…and here we also got some delicious pie! Unfortunately, I forgot what it was but it was AMAZING!

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This is how they cut the pasta into such perfect stripes…

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Leaving Molise we stopped by another ROME
(I understand how this can be confusing)

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Here we got some Fettuccine with classic Alfredo sauce which was originally made to ease Alfredo di Lelio’s wife’s morning sicknesses and help her appetite during her pregnancy.

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At this point of the visit the buttons on my pants were begging to get some outside help to hold my pants together and we still had 1 other table to visit…and desserts…For dessert we got some peach and strawberry…ohm…thing. It tasted great and it was so refreshing.

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Last but not least we finally arrived to NAPLES
(I’ll make him a lasagna he can’t refuse!”)

The Godfather himself welcomed us to the family while he put down the cat face stamp on our made up passport. 😀

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The gigantic amount of lasagna did not help my pants situation but how could I say “no thank you” the Godfather?!

We got vegetable lasagna roll-ups with stuffed mushrooms on top. Damn.
They served plain soda water with the meal, and I have to admit they got it right. That is exactly what we needed after so much food.

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We collected all of our stamps in our passport and we were ready to get back to reality again, even though it was hard to walk after.

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It was such a fun experience, we were very thankful for all the yummy food we received from the students! Keep up the great work.

  1. What is your favorite Italian meal?
  2. Which table did you like the most?

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1 COMMENT

  1. HISTORY OF ALFREDO DI LELIO CREATOR IN 1908 OF “FETTUCCINE ALL’ALFREDO” (“FETTUCCINE ALFREDO”), NOW SERVED BY HIS NEPHEW INES DI LELIO, AT THE RESTAURANT “IL VERO ALFREDO” – “ALFREDO DI ROMA” IN ROME, PIAZZA AUGUSTO IMPERATORE 30

    With reference to your article I have the pleasure to tell you the history of my grandfather Alfredo Di Lelio, who is the creator of “Fettuccine all’Alfredo” (“Fettuccine Alfredo”) in 1908 in the “trattoria” run by his mother Angelina in Rome, Piazza Rosa (Piazza disappeared in 1910 following the construction of the Galleria Colonna / Sordi). This “trattoria” of Piazza Rosa has become the “birthplace of fettuccine all’Alfredo”.
    More specifically, as is well known to many people who love the “fettuccine all’Alfredo”, this famous dish in the world was invented by Alfredo Di Lelio concerned about the lack of appetite of his wife Ines, who was pregnant with my father Armando (born February 26, 1908).
    Alfredo di Lelio opened his restaurant “Alfredo” in 1914 in Rome and in 1943, during the war, he sold the restaurant to others outside his family.
    In 1950 Alfredo Di Lelio decided to reopen with his son Armando his restaurant in Piazza Augusto Imperatore n.30 “Il Vero Alfredo” (“Alfredo di Roma”), whose fame in the world has been strengthened by his nephew Alfredo and that now managed by me, with the famous “gold cutlery” (fork and spoon gold) donated in 1927 by two well-known American actors Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks (in gratitude for the hospitality).
    See also the website of “Il Vero Alfredo” .
    I must clarify that other restaurants “Alfredo” in Rome (as Alfredo alla scrofa or Alfredo’s gallery) do not belong and are out of my brand “Il Vero Alfredo – Alfredo di Roma”.
    I inform you that the restaurant “Il Vero Alfredo –Alfredo di Roma” is in the registry of “Historic Shops of Excellence” of the City of Rome Capitale.
    Best regards Ines Di Lelio

    IN ITALIANO

    STORIA DI ALFREDO DI LELIO, CREATORE DELLE “FETTUCCINE ALL’ALFREDO” (“FETTUCCINE ALFREDO”), E DELLA SUA TRADIZIONE FAMILIARE PRESSO IL RISTORANTE “IL VERO ALFREDO” (“ALFREDO DI ROMA”) IN PIAZZA AUGUSTO IMPERATORE A ROMA

    Con riferimento al Vostro articolo ho il piacere di raccontarVi la storia di mio nonno Alfredo Di Lelio, inventore delle note “fettuccine all’Alfredo” (“Fettuccine Alfredo”).
    Alfredo Di Lelio, nato nel settembre del 1883 a Roma in Vicolo di Santa Maria in Trastevere, cominciò a lavorare fin da ragazzo nella piccola trattoria aperta da sua madre Angelina in Piazza Rosa, un piccolo slargo (scomparso intorno al 1910) che esisteva prima della costruzione della Galleria Colonna (ora Galleria Sordi).
    Il 1908 fu un anno indimenticabile per Alfredo Di Lelio: nacque, infatti, suo figlio Armando e videro contemporaneamente la luce in tale trattoria di Piazza Rosa le sue “fettuccine”, divenute poi famose in tutto il mondo. Questa trattoria è “the birthplace of fettuccine all’Alfredo”.
    Alfredo Di Lelio inventò le sue “fettuccine” per dare un ricostituente naturale, a base di burro e parmigiano, a sua moglie (e mia nonna) Ines, prostrata in seguito al parto del suo primogenito (mio padre Armando). Il piatto delle “fettuccine” fu un successo familiare prima ancora di diventare il piatto che rese noto e popolare Alfredo Di Lelio, personaggio con “i baffi all’Umberto” ed i calli alle mani a forza di mischiare le sue “fettuccine” davanti ai clienti sempre più numerosi.
    Nel 1914, a seguito della chiusura di detta trattoria per la scomparsa di Piazza Rosa dovuta alla costruzione della Galleria Colonna, Alfredo Di Lelio decise di trasferirsi in un locale in una via del centro di Roma, ove aprì il suo primo ristorante che gestì fino al 1943, per poi cedere l’attività a terzi estranei alla sua famiglia.
    Ma l’assenza dalla scena gastronomica di Alfredo Di Lelio fu del tutto transitoria. Infatti nel 1950 riprese il controllo della sua tradizione familiare ed aprì, insieme al figlio Armando, il ristorante “Il Vero Alfredo” (noto all’estero anche come “Alfredo di Roma”) in Piazza Augusto Imperatore n.30 (cfr. il sito web di Il Vero Alfredo).
    Con l’avvio del nuovo ristorante Alfredo Di Lelio ottenne un forte successo di pubblico e di clienti negli anni della “dolce vita”. Successo, che, tuttora, richiama nel ristorante un flusso continuo di turisti da ogni parte del mondo per assaggiare le famose “fettuccine all’Alfredo” al doppio burro da me servite, con l’impegno di continuare nel tempo la tradizione familiare dei miei cari maestri, nonno Alfredo, mio padre Armando e mio fratello Alfredo. In particolare le fettuccine sono servite ai clienti con 2 “posate d’oro”: una forchetta ed un cucchiaio d’oro regalati nel 1927 ad Alfredo dai due noti attori americani M. Pickford e D. Fairbanks (in segno di gratitudine per l’ospitalità).
    Un aneddoto della vita di mio nonno. Alfredo fu un grande amico di Ettore Petrolini, che conobbe nei primi anni del 1900 in un incontro tra ragazzi del quartiere Trastevere (tra cui mio nonno) e ragazzi del Quartiere Monti (tra cui Petrolini). Fu proprio Petrolini che un giorno, già attore famoso, andando a trovare l’amico Alfredo, gli disse che lui era un “attore” della cucina romana nel mondo e gli consigliò di attaccare alle pareti del ristorante le sue foto con i noti personaggi soprattutto dello spettacolo, del cinema e della cultura in genere che erano ospiti di “Alfredo”. Anche ciò fa parte del cuore della bella tradizione di famiglia che continuo a rendere sempre viva con affetto ed entusiasmo.
    Desidero precisare che altri ristoranti “Alfredo” a Roma (come Alfredo alla scrofa o Alfredo’s gallery) non appartengono e sono fuori dal mio brand di famiglia.
    Vi informo che il Ristorante “Il Vero Alfredo” è presente nell’Albo dei “Negozi Storici di Eccellenza – sezione Attività Storiche di Eccellenza” del Comune di Roma Capitale.
    Grata per la Vostra attenzione ed ospitalità nel Vostro interessante blog, cordiali saluti
    Ines Di Lelio

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